is a great game: sometimes rewarding, often frustrating but highly
addictive. Getting started in it is actually not so difficult,
and hopefully this article can help you avoid some of the common
first steps. The biggest mistake made by people wanting to
start in golf is to rush out and buy a brand new set of shiny
and expensive golf clubs. While they are nice to look at you should
keep in mind that today's golf equipment comes in great varieties
to cater for different golfing types and abilities.
just starting out you do not know which set fits you best. Just
imagine the envious looks you get at the driving range when you
come with your $2000 set, and the subsequent laughter when you
try and just 'hack away' - not worth the embarrassment!
Once you spend
a few hundred or even thousands of dollars on a set that doesn't
suit your style you're stuck with it or you have to sell it to
somebody else at a loss. If you feel you want your own clubs get
a half set. This generally comprises five irons and perhaps two
woods and a putter. Usually the irons are the odd numbers 3,5,7,9
and wedge. These clubs are more than enough to get you started.
A better alternative:
most driving ranges will have clubs for hire, so you can try out
a few different ones. You can also borrow one or two clubs from
a friend. The shortest iron (nine iron) or a wedge are the best
clubs to start, practicing with it will give you the feeling of
hitting the ball in the air and should be fairly straight forward.
to get golf clubs? Most Pro shops and driving ranges sell
second hand clubs. They will also be able to offer you advice
and let you try some clubs out. Alternatively, nearly all driving
ranges will have clubs for hire if you want to have a go without
committing to a set until you get the hang of it. Or ask other
people at the driving range, you will soon find out that many
have another set of clubs at home because they made the exact
same mistakes I mentioned above. Make sure you try before you
buy, if they fit (and only if they fit!) you can often get them
for a steal. Make use of these opportunities, and also take a
look at our website, LearnAboutGolf.com, as to how to choose a
club. I again stress that you need to have a basic understanding
on which club suits you reasonably well before you buy. DO NOT
buy expensive brands at this stage.
to play, I want to play!" As hard as it will be to contain
yourself, don't even contemplate going anywhere near a golf course.
Golf is technically quite demanding, and without at least some
basic training you'll end up with a lot of frustration. You've
seen the top players on TV losing their cool in frustration, imagine
how you will feel if not even a single shot goes where you want
other people having to wait for you will also not be happy. As
a beginner at the great game of golf, start off at a driving range,
take at least four or five lessons, learn the fundamentals, progress
to a 9 hole course and eventually venture out into the great unknown
of an 18 hole golf course. Believe me, it will be a lot more fun
for you and those around you if you follow this path.
to get lessons? You will meet plenty of people at the range
who will teach you the 'innermost secrets' of golf. Fact is that
most of them have started playing not long before you. So the
answer to the above question is: go to a Professional. As you
have seen on TV, even the world's top players have a coach. Tiger
Woods, probably the best golfer the world, still takes lessons.
Certified Golf Professionals are the only people qualified to
teach you how to play the game. Lessons from a Pro will cost you
money but will be the best investment you'll ever make. Taking
the advice from the 'know-it-all' people at the range will likely
screw-up your game at the very early stage, and it will take a
long time to correct the faults later.
The two places
to get golf lessons are at driving ranges and golf clubs. You
don't have to be a member of a club to get a lesson from the Pro.
You bring in money, so they will be glad to help. The usual cost
is about $25-40 per 45 min, but you will get reductions for a
block booking. If you are a bit on the budget see if they do group
bookings, those are also cheaper than individual lessons.
to do? Books and videos can be invaluable in learning the
basics. To build a sound golf
swing you will need the three fundamentals: Grip, Stance and
Posture. There are some very good books and videos on the market
that will help you to establish the three fundamentals. And watch
the Pro's on the TV, or better still video them and play back
in slow motion, you'll learn a lot this way. Don't get blinded
by too much science, you're still a beginner. Stick to Grip, Stance
and Posture and you'll be on your way. Take a look at the golf
tips and golf lessons on our website, LearnAboutGolf.com, for
some advice as well.
your money on expensive clubs until you have reached a basic
level of competency.
near a golf course until you have reached a basic level.
from a qualified professional.
rules of golf and basic golf etiquette.
I hope that
this article has been of some help to avoid costly mistakes many
people made, including myself. Follow the above basics and you
are on your way to all the fun (and frustration) golf can offer.
Peter is the webmaster of learnaboutgolf.com where he offers valuable
tips for beginners and intermediates in Golf.